Today I cashed in my Christmas present from Hubby and spent nearly eight hours learning about bees. I am now of the opinion that bees are the coolest insect ever. From their five eyes to their pollen basket, they are honey-making machines and hive engineers. The bee truly is an amazing creature. Come May, I will have my first hive in place, my first colony hopefully settling in and building their combs.
I set off early, right at daylight, because of the unexpected snowfall yesterday that left nearly 4 inches of mess. I wanted to be sure to give myself enough time just in case the roads were still iffy. The highway had some icy spots starting off, but the farther I got away from home, the more the roads improved, so I finally relaxed, turned on the radio, and made my way towards Long Lane Honey Bee Farms just outside of Fairmount. The only rough spot I encountered was the road Google Maps told me to take just outside Oakwood. This road hadn't been plowed. This road called for 4-wheel drive. I love my 4-wheel drive. If I'd not had it, I wouldn't have made it to my class.
But I made it, and I along with 11 others learned the in's and out's of beginning beekeeping. I met individuals from Missouri, Indiana, and Arkansas. I handled honeycomb on a frame. I put a hive together. I learned about mites and small hive beetles. The longer the day went on, the more I knew I wanted to bring bees to my very small, urban farm. I want to nurture a colony and watch the magic happen.